Mason joined Watsi on April 7th, 2014. Seven years ago, Mason joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Mason's most recent donation traveled 8,700 miles to support Joffrey, a playful 3-year-old from Tanzania, to fund mobilty-restoring knee surgery.
Mason has funded healthcare for 77 patients in 12 countries.
Mason has funded healthcare for 77 patients in 12 countries.
Joffrey is three years old and the only child of his young parents. He's a playful and curious boy who wants to know and understand everything around him. He is a big lover of football just like his father despite his legs being curved. His mother said she thinks he's too cheeky for his age. Joffrey has not started school yet but he keeps asking his mother to take him to school. Both Joffrey's parents are small-scale farmers who grow maize, groundnuts, rice, and vegetables. They get most of their food from what they grow on their farm. Joffrey was recently diagnosed with bilateral genu varus. His legs bow outward so that his knees do not touch. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, he feels pain even after a short walk. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Joffrey. The procedure is scheduled to take place on October 7th. Treatment will hopefully restore Joffrey's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Joffrey’s father says: “My son’s legs are worsening as days go by and from how I see it he might not be able to walk or enjoy his play, especially football, if he does not have this needed surgery.”
Kea is a student who lives in a rural province of Cambodia with his parents, who are farmers, and his younger brother and sister. When he was 11, Kea had a severe ear infection that caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in his left ear to perforate. As a result, Kea experiences pain and discharge from his ear. He also has difficulty communicating with others. Kea traveled to visit our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), to receive treatment. On September 1st, he will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in his left ear. During the procedure, surgeons will close the perforation. Now CSC is requesting $464 to fund his procedure. This will cover the cost of medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Kea shared, "I hope my hearing will improve and the the infection and pain will go away."
Phat is a 61-year-old mother of five children. She has two sons, three daughters, and now eleven grandchildren. She lives with her husband, who is a policeman. She likes to cook, visit with neighbors, and grow flowers. She also likes to spend time traveling to religious ceremonies. Three years ago, Phat developed a cataract in her left eye, causing her blurry vision, sensitivity to light, and occasional tearing. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Phat learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for five hours with her daughter seeking treatment. On July 8th, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in her left eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $229 procedure. Phat shared, "I hope I can travel by myself more after this surgery, so I can visit my children, see my grandchildren, and see many pagodas."
Erick is a seven-month-old baby boy and the youngest child in a family of two children. His mother does laundry work to help provide for the family, while his father is a veterinarian in the area. His business was doing well before the COVID-19 pandemic, but unfortunately, they had to stop paying for health insurance when they became financially strained due to the pandemic. Erick was born with an anorectal malformation, or a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. He is scheduled to have corrective surgery on July 5th and now our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $1,393 to cover the total cost of Erick's procedure and care. After his recovery, Erick will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing severe health complications in the future. Erick’s father shared, “during this hard time of the pandemic, we are not able to raise any money for Erick’s surgery. Please help us."
John is very talkative and welcoming 46-year-old man. He arrived to the hospital with pain and distention for 3 days before admission to Kijabe Hospital this week. He had an x-ray and an endoscopy on the same day that revealed he has a Sigmoid Volvulus a condition in which the sigmoid colon wraps around itself, causing a closed-loop obstruction. This condition causes continued abdominal discomfort. He's now scheduled for a laparotomy and sigmoid colectomy to rectify the condition and needs financial support. Barely two weeks ago, John was very excited that he had found a job and was looking forward to his first day at work. Two days before he had to report to work, he noticed that he had not passed stool for some days. He started feeling uncomfortable but thought that he will be well soon enough. The day he was waiting for had arrived and he reported to work very happily but uncomfortable because his condition had worsened. He opened up to his immediate supervisor who advised him to go back home and seek medical attention. His supervisor went ahead to offer him some money to cater for the transport fee. John went to the terminus and boarded a matatu to head back home. Along the way, the pain worsened and was unbearable and he started vomiting. He requested the driver to drop him off at a nearby hospital. Luckily, the matatu was almost near our medical partner's care center Kijabe Hospital. The driver pulled over and helped him catch a taxi to Kijabe as fast as he could. He was admitted as an emergency case under the general surgery team. John is the father of six children, with his firstborn now 20 years old and married. Four of his children are in high school and the youngest is yet to join the school. Eight months ago, John lost his job as a security guard in a flower farm. After he was dismissed, he used the money he was given as service fees to buy a motorcycle, with which he started a bodaboda taxi business. His wife is involved in farming and mostly she sells the farm produce to supplement their family's earnings. John shared, “I feel sad for myself and my family because now I cannot do anything to provide for them as I am in hospital. I would really like to go back to work and earn enough for them.”
Mary is a 78-year-old woman and a married mother of ten children. Since her husband is elderly, she depends on her children for day-to-day support. Mary used to have a small business selling cereals, but now that she is older, she mostly stays home and does some farming. In the mid-2020, Mary began experiencing pain in the upper left part of her abdomen, abdominal fullness and lack of appetite. She was taken to a few different hospitals, but the medicines prescribed did not help her condition. An ultrasound scan showed that Mary has gallstones, and a cholecystectomy was recommended to help her fully heal. If not treated, she could experience complications like gall bladder inflammation or blockage. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Mary to receive treatment. On May 6th, surgeons at AMH's care center will perform a cholecystectomy to remove Mary's gallbladder. Now, AMH is requesting $788 to fund Mary's surgery. Mary shared, "if that is the only way to make me well, I plead for your help so that I can be ok and continue mentoring my children and taking care of my husband."
Abdela is a 23-month-old boy from Ethiopia. He is a strong boy who loves to tease, run, and play with others. He is an only child, and his mother lost her husband in a car accident when she was eight months pregnant. Abdela's mother was a housewife and when her husband passed, his friend bought her a Tuk Tuk. She stays at home and she raises Abdela with the income she gets from the Tuk Tuk. The family lives in a rented house. Abdela was born with hypospadias, a condition that causes urinary dysfunction. Without treatment, he will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and will be at risk of infertility. Fortunately, Abdela is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on April 6th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,293 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. His mom shared, “after the treatment, I hope my boy will heal. I am sure he will be smart and reach a big position. His mind is very quick and he is smart.”
Ye is a 48-year-old man from Thailand. Ye lives with his wife and daughter on the Thai-Burma border. He used to work as a carpenter, but had to stop working two years ago when his health deteriorated. Ye's wife is a homemaker, and his daughter works as a vendor selling mobile phones. His family income is just enough to cover their daily needs. Currently, Ye experiences back pain and also a strong discomfort when using the bathroom. He sometimes has a slight fever if his pain is more severe. To remedy this, Ye underwent laser treatment for kidney stones, which helped relieve some of his pain, but the doctors have determined that his case is severe and surgery has now been advised. If left untreated, Ye's symptoms will continue to worsen and put him at risk for further health complications in the future. After seeking treatment with our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), Ye is scheduled to undergo his cholecystectomy on February 22nd. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Ye's procedure and care. Once recovered, he will be able to be more active and hopefully be pain-free. Ye shared, "I have been experiencing this condition for many years and I hope that after surgery I will be freed from pain and I will be able to work again."
Jue is a 25-year-old woman who lives with her family in a village in Hmawbi Township, Yangon Division, Burma. Her parents are housekeepers, and her youngest brother is a first-year university student who has been seeking work. Jue used to run a beauty salon, but had to stop working four months ago when her health deteriorated. In her free time, Jue likes to watch the news and videos relating to her work at the beauty salon. She also likes to read books and wants to write a book of her own someday. In August 2020, Jue felt pains in her stomach and chest. She would also experience difficulty breathing sometimes, and she would feel tired when she walked for a longer period of time. Jue went to the clinic in her village, where she received oral medication, but she did not feel better after taking it. She returned to the clinic several times over the course of two months, but her condition continued to worsen – the chest pain, difficulty breathing and feeling of fatigue happened more often. Jue decided to go to another clinic in North Okkala Township in Yangon in November 2020. At the clinic, the doctor listened to her heart with a stethoscope, and informed her that she has a congenital heart condition. The doctor recommended she receive a blood test, an echocardiogram (echo) and an electrocardiogram (ecg) at a hospital. After visiting a hospital to receive those tests, the doctor there told her that she was born with a hole in her heart and that she might need to receive surgery at the general hospital. However, the cost of surgery was too high. Luckily, Jue crossed paths with another former patient and was referred to Watsi's Medical Partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) to seek assistance with accessing treatment. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On January 24th, U Win will undergo an atrial septal defect closure procedure. Once recovered, her quality of life will significantly improve and she will be able to return to working at her beauty salon. Now, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Jue shared, “I want to get better as quickly as possible and go back to work. I’m worried about my younger brother. He doesn’t have a job, and he needs to graduate from university. I’m also worried about Covid-19 because nobody has a job right now.”
Naw Ree is a 49-year-old woman from Thailand. Naw Ree has lived by herself in a refugee camp in northern Thailand since 2009. As a camp resident, Naw Ree receives 243 baht (approx. $8 USD) each month from an organization that supports refugee camp residents. She also works as a maternal and child health worker, receiving 900 baht (approx. $30 USD) per month. Naw Ree raises chickens and grows vegetables. Despite receiving free health care services in the camp, Naw Ree is struggling to make ends meet. On December 16th, 2020, Naw Ree went to see a woman who had recently given birth, to remind her about vaccinating her baby on time. After sitting and talking to the woman in her home, Naw Ree stood up to leave but felt light headed and fell. She put out her left hand to stop her fall, and hurt her left arm. She went to the hospital in the camp, run by Malteser International [MI] Thailand, and received pain medication and her arm was put into a sling. The next day, she was referred to Mae Seriang General Hospital for further treatment. At the hospital she received x-rays and the doctor told her that she had fractured one of the bones in her left forearm. She was then referred to Chiang Mai Hospital for further treatment, but her transfer was delayed for over two weeks due to an outbreak in COVID-19 cases in northern Thailand. Since Naw Ree lives by herself, she has to cook, wash her clothes, and feed her chickens without anyone's help, a difficult feat with her broken arm. Currently, she is in pain but has no fever. She can only fall asleep if she takes pain medication. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Naw Ree will undergo surgery to reset her fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for January 6th and will cost $1,500. After surgery, Naw Ree will no longer be in pain. She will be able to go back to work as a health worker and she will be able to complete her household chores without pain or discomfort. Naw Ree shared, "My greatest wish is that I recover and that I may be able to use my left arm again."
Gabriel is a 46-year-old refugee from South Sudan. He is a father of six children aged between 2-19 years old. Currently, Gabriel and his family are staying in the Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya fleeing civil conflict in their home country. In June 2020, Gabriel had an accident and broke his arm. He underwent surgery in his hometown of Juba in the same month and was discharged home from the hospital. However, his left arm started developing further complications, and he was forced to seek treatment in Kenya after his family left Sudan. Gabriel has chronic osteomyelitis of the left humerus and infected hardware in his arm. Gabriel has undergone 3 surgeries, including humeral debridement, hardware removal, and bone cementing. Doctors recommend another urgent sequestrectomy surgery on his left humerus to remove the infected hardware. If left untreated, he risks impediment of blood circulation within the bone leading to bone death and even amputation. Unfortunately, this procedure is costly for Gabriel and his family. He does not currently have a job, nor any medical coverage. Due to the support of well-wishers, friends, and family, Gabriel has been able to raise some money for his earlier medical and surgical concerns. However, he was forced to postpone his surgery due to lack of funds. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Gabriel receive treatment. He is scheduled to undergo a sequestrectomy on December 2nd at our medical partner's care center. This procedure will cost $1,500, and he appeals for financial help to fund the cost of his care. Gabriel shared, “I am in so much pain and there have been so many surgeries for me. I need assistance on this one.”
John is a baby boy from Tanzania. He is the fourth-born in a family of four children. John's parents are both subsistence farmers who grow maize and also farm honey. John has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, John has been experiencing an increasing head circumference. Without treatment, John will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $765 to cover the cost of surgery for John that will treat his hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on November 2nd and will drain the excess fluid from John's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, John will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. John’s mother shared, “We are really struggling financially and there is no way we are going to raise the money needed for our son to have this necessary surgery. We appreciate any help you can provide.”